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SAILING: Great Scott and 470 girls steal the show in Palma
Updated 8:59am Thursday 3rd April 2014 in Sport
PORTLAND’S Finn sailor Giles Scott and Olympic silver medallists Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark were unbeatable on the third day of ISAF World Cup racing in Palma, taking a clean sweep of race wins as the regatta reaches its halfway stage.
It was a tale of two halves across Palma Bay, with the more easterly courses near Arenal eventually seeing around 15-20 knots of wind and some lively racing, while the westerly courses struggled to get enough breeze in a stable enough direction.
Racing proved impossible in the Laser, Laser Radial and RS:X windsurfing events based in Can Pastilla, while Helena Lucas will have to wait another day to see if she can extend her race-winning streak as the 2.4mR Paralympic fleet was also abandoned for the day.
Scott has assumed top spot in the Finn standings after two comfortable race wins yesterday as the improved breeze increased the tempo on this first day of the finals series.
“Yesterday was a turn for the better for me, with two firsts. Clearly that’s good for me, and quite needed as the Frenchman Thomas (Le Breton) has been sailing really well for the first couple of days and put a bit of a gap on the fleet so I think I’ve closed that right up,” explained Scott, the former Finn World and European Champion.
“It seems that Palma is the first event where the Finn fleet does turn up. We’ve got 100 boats here, or near enough and I think all the main players are racing so it’s a good marker for the year.
“We had a long wait, flapping around in no wind at all, and then suddenly a pressure line came through and very quickly it was up to around 15 knots. We got two really good races in.”
Mills and Clark were relishing the conditions for 470 women’s racing on the Arenal side of the Bay, amassing two race wins – the second by a compelling two-minute margin – from their two races to see them elevated into the overall second place..
For the 2012 silver medal-winning duo, this Princess Sofia Trophy marks the start of their full-time assault towards Rio 2016, with the pair having enjoyed a break from the Oly-mpic sailing circuit during 2013.
In the 49erFX class, Wey-mouth’s Charlotte Dobson and Sophie Ainsworth had a steady day posting six and nine to keep them in third overall.
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